During 2011, ACN market saw multiple ups and downs all over the globe. Prices of ACN in Asia were on increasing trend from November 2010 till April 2011. It reached USD 2,765/MT, up by about 28% since November 2010. On the contrary, the ACN market experienced a second slump (first one was in 2009) in prices and fell to reach USD 1,675/MT in Asia during November 2011. This fall was a decline of about 39% compared to April 2011 prices.

Factors which took a toll on the Asian market:

  • The Europe debt crisis and credit tightening by the Chinese government had a negative sentiment on end-user industry. It specifically impacted the demand from the electronic, automotive, textile, and plastic industries.
  • Low operating rates by the ABS producers in China as well as other Asian countries reduced the demand for ACN. In turn, it resulted in lowering of operating rates by the ACN producers to maintain low inventories and minimize losses.
  • Another significant factor that supported the price fall of ACN in Asia was a decrease in prices of feedstock especially propylene, due to the low demand for propylene from other end-use industries.

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The author is a Research Analyst associated with Beroe Inc.